April 18th, 2013, 21:16 PM
Iron Man 3 to Debut as a 4DX Film in Japan
3D movies made a comeback in recent years, driven primarily by the $3 billion success of James Cameron's Avatar. Now, a new dimension in film presentation may be about to take audiences into brand-new territory by targeting our other senses via something called 4DX.
According to a report in the Hollywood Reporter, Marvel's Iron Man 3 will debut in select Japanese theaters later this month employing the 4DX system for the first time. Developed by South Korea's largest movie chain operator, the CJ Group, 4DX-equipped theaters deliver smells, seat motions, and additional effects such as strobe lights and fog, all in sync with events as they appear on the screen. Beyond South Korea, this full immersion approach to cinema is already in operation in countries such as Israel, Mexico, Brazil, and China.
In the company's promotional video, an audience member is shown being magically propelled through the middle of an action movie while gripping the edges of his theater seat. However, components of the 4DX dynamic are hardly magical, as some of them have been tried long ago.
U.S. audiences were introduced to "Smell-O-Vision" back in 1960 via a film called Scent of Mystery. In 1982, a film called Polyester also gave us "Odorama," and as recently as 2006, Japan's NTT Communications presented the historical epic The New World with a range of smells to fit certain moments. Last year, meanwhile, Red Seat Entertainment was pitching theater owners its Tremor FX seats, which contain three vibrating actuators and shake along with the action on the screen.
But what makes 4DX different is that it takes the thrill ride aspect of assaulting all the audience's senses, a dynamic already present in some Disneyland installations, and brings it to the average movie theater.
In addition to Japan, 4DX movies will also be coming to Taiwan, Russia, and other parts of Eastern Europe. While no firm date for bringing 4DX to the U.S. has been announced, the company hopes to bring the system stateside sometime within the next five years.